A question for the Parnassius experts here. Are there any details in the books about a Major Charlton who discovered Parnassius charltonius, Simo, acco etc, captured in a locality given asChinese Tartary at 15.000ft, perhaps this is the Ladakh area, India, where he is known to have collected. The Parnassius species he discovered were described by G.R. Gray in 1853. Just Major Charlton is given online, with no other details about him.
I believe that Major Charlton who collected and discovered the above the Parnassius is Andrew Charlton who collected them in Chinese Tartery= Ladakh, at 15000- 16000 feet, date unknown.
Charlton joined the army in 1820 and in 1835 was a second lieutenant, and second in command of the Assam light infantry from the Bengal Regiment stationed at the Sadiya garrison. While there he is most famous for discovery the Tea Plant in India, for which he received the Gold Medal from the Agricultural Society. During 1835 he was seriously injured in a military action while storming a stronghold of the stockade of Daffa Gaum at Gackwah.
In 1838 he is now a Captain, and is stationed with the 74 Regiment of Native Infantry at Nusseerabad, and still suffering from his wounds, is given a six month leave of absence. In 1841 he is stationed at Loodiana, and in 1843 at Nowgong.
In July 1845 he returns home to England with a large collection of new Birds and Mammals, insects, that he had collected in India, and Malacca, Malaysia. His address is given as Liscard in Cheshire. T.C. Eyton who described some of his new birds in The Annals and Magazine of Natural History, mentions his discovery of the Tea Plant in India.
In 1846 now a Major he is stationed at Mhow, and retires from the army in 1852.
The Charlton's Parnassius were described by G.R. Gray in Catalogue of lepidopterous insects in the collection of the British Museum (1852).
All information courtesy of various web sources found with Google Chrome and searching the wonderful Internet Archive. I thought that there might be further details of Charlton in the Parnassius books, but probably not?
pretty much the location is uknown too. Chinese Tartary was not a specific place but a huge area that included many today countries. His specimens were most likely to be collected somewhere near Tibet/India (or Nepal) boarder, possibly Kumaon.
I also have began to wonder what those who study this group think about large number of subspecies that various authors are creating, almost for each locality where Parnassius charltonius occurs, which is also the case with many other Parnassius, surely this bears no relation to reality, and perhaps as the authors state in the paper I added, it is because this species is a highly desirable insect to collect with a high money value. As a result I often see these highly priced and dubious paratypes of Parnassius charltonius and other Parnassius subspecies of that group on the web for sale.
The authors of the web page Butterflies of India sum this up nicely with Parnassius charltonius
"Considerable infrasubspecific and subspecific variation in this species has been named, often with little understanding of geographical and altitudinal separation between the named forms or subspecies, so it is difficult to ascertain taxonomic validity of many of these names. A comprehensive study of this entire genus is in order before any taxonomic issues can be solved in this group."
As far as I know, Korb enjoys a very special reputation in Russia. As for me, I once met him on the Dolon Pass in Kyrgyzstan: he introduced himself to us (French entomologists) as a sort of pope of entomology. He left us with an impression that I will call "picturesque" (to speak nicely).
Additional precision: in our group were present several eminent specialists of Parnassinae including renowned author of phylogenetic studies. All were stunned by this meeting ...